Monday, 24 June 2013

The Australian Edit-A Fashion Affair

I think it's safe to say that iv'e seen my fair share of fashion markets. From vintage clothes packed onto racks, scarves spilling out of suitcases in car parks and stalls crammed into halls, bars and hotels, I was starting to feel like my market experiences were blending into some kind of monotonous market mayhem. Turns out all I needed was a little breath of fresh air, which is exactly what I got last Sunday at this year's Winter Edition of The Australian Edit. 
Now in its second year, The Australian Edit-A Fashion Space features many of Australia's finest up-and-coming designers who are trying to wedge their, um, wedges, into the fashion industry door. In an effort to support these talented creatives, The Australian Edit nurtures new talent within the local fashion industry by providing an ideal platform to introduce their brands to an audience of receptive fashionistas...that is, suckers like me who will willingly spend a months paycheque on clothes (mock if you must, but we'll see who's laughing when I stumble upon a pair of second hand Monolos at 80% off!). Held in the beautiful and historic barn at Yering Station winery in the Yarra Valley, the day was a huge success with hundreds turning out to see what Australia's brightest new designers had to offer.

It was a beautiful day for a countryside drive and when we arrived at Yering Station the market was already flooded with enthusiastic buyers, designers and minglers. After a complimentary glass of Yering Station sparkling (oh yeah, we knew we were in for a good day) we began our happy browsing through the stalls. I have to say, i've never been quite so impressed with the quality of products produced by the designers as almost every stall had something that caught my eye. 
On the jewellery front, there was the new brand Silvarai that created jewellery which, quite frankly, I couldn't seem to take my eyes off (though I have recently been diagnosed with Magpieitis-an infliction that means i'm drawn into a deep hypnosis when I encounter shiny objects). Designed by Lisa Rai, each piece is intensely intricate and beautifully hand crafted. The highest quality materials are used to produce the silver-based collection which embraces unusual shapes, playing with textures and hints of colour. 
Collection by Silvarai

Also of great interest were the simple creations from the name-sake brand Kim Victoria, who creates rings and earrings which are delicate and feminine. Much of her inspiration is gained from a love of Australiana and ancient treasure, which I could see in her jewellery as most held stunning colourful semi-precious stones.  
Beautiful rings by Kim Victoria

Right: Designer Kim Victoria Wearne

Another jeweller who took my fancy (as, let's be honest, most of them do), was Melbourne-based label Pilkington Jewellers. Designer Lynn Pilkington comes from a long heritage of jewellery makers, which becomes apparent when one sees her amazing creations. When I spoke to Lynn she said much of her inspiration came from her overseas travel, which I found was reflected in her architectural, colourful and individual pieces. She also shared that her grandfather had been responsible for helping create the royal in, for her Royal Highness! How freaking cool is that!

Of course not to be missed were the beautiful clothes. As well as some beautifully handwoven knitwear on display, there was the Melbourne label Aaizel, created by a former RMIT fashion graduate. The pieces were highly detailed and individual, focusing on the concept of juxtaposing femininity and masculinity in harmony. With stunning embellished lace, jacquard brocade, velvets and silk, this is a truly luxurious collection...hence the unfortunate price tag. My favourite items were the beautifully embellished lace jackets that hung straight to the floor.
 The designer wearing one of her pieces

Once again, my love of all things sparkly immediately drew me to the dresses from the brand Divya R, which all had a very on trend 20's appeal to them. Based in Melbourne, Indian Designer Diva Rao established her brand in 2012 and was inspired by her home country. She creates stunning pieces that hold an element of surprise that delivers effortless style-cred. In other words...mmm, shiny.

The day was a huge success, with many market-goers happily walking away with oodles of hand-crafted, Australian made creations. It was a market filled with talented emerging designers, amazing jewellery and original clothing...and hell, even if it wasn't any good, I still would have gotten a free glass of wine right!

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